The UCF Knights Baseball team held off a furious rally by the RPI #12 Miami Hurricanes to take a critical 8-7 victory in Coral Gables.
UCF scored 6 runs in the 5th and led 8-1 through 7 1⁄2 innings, but Miami scored four in the 7th, two in the 8th, and had the game-tying and winning runs on base with one out in the 9th when Jack Sinclair came in and slammed the door:
One more look at Jack Sinclair’s game-ending and possibly season-saving strikeout to help @UCF_Baseball finish off Miami tonight: pic.twitter.com/EYZYAc1gB3— Black & Gold Banneret (@UCF_Banneret) May 9, 2019
Tyler Osik was 1/3 at the plate with a home run.
#UCF has now won eight of its last 10 games.— Brian Murphy (@Spokes_Murphy) May 9, 2019
Five of those eight wins were one-run games. Two others were two-run games.
UCF is now 13-1 in mid-week games and has defeated Miami, Florida and Florida State all in the same season for the first time since 1985.
Greg Lovelady, himself a former Cane, spoke after the game:
Took a few years off his life tonight, but Coach was ed up after that win ⚔️ pic.twitter.com/omsNwGktVj— UCF Baseball (@UCF_Baseball) May 9, 2019
UCF’s victory is a critical one for their postseason hopes. The Knights came in at 57th in the RPI, and one of the first five teams out of the NCAA Tournament bracket, according to D1Baseball.com. Miami’s RPI coming into Wednesday night was 12th.
But the win over the Hurricanes gives UCF a critical feather in its cap as the team heads into a conference bye week of sorts, with no AAC weekend games on the slate.
The Knights are 31-19 on the season and 9-12 in The American with four games left: One at RPI #36 FAU on Tuesday night, and three games next weekend at home against Houston, who is in 4th in The American.
Aside from ECU and Tulane, no team in The American is currently more than one game over .500 in the league.